The Office of Admissions received 606 early decision (ED I) applications for admission to the Class of 2017. The number of applications is up from last year’s 594, and is a new record for the College.
ED I applications have been steadily rising in past years, with 568 in 2010 and 594 in 2011.
Dean of Admissions and Financial Aid Scott Meiklejohn said that his office treats ED applicants no differently than regular applicants.
“Applying early decision is not an advantage, or a strategy to get in, it’s an option that’s there,” he said.
Last year, Bowdoin accepted 29 percent of students who applied ED I, as opposed to 13.8 percent of regular decision applicants.
“It’s an option, but it’s not that important to us that ED gets to be a bigger part of the application pool,” said Meiklejohn.
The application review process is still in the early stages, so it is too early for Admissions to estimate how many acceptance letters it will mail out next month. The College does not target a specific number of ED I acceptances.
“How many students we admit is always a reflection of who applies and how excited we are about those decisions,” Meiklejohn said. “Knowing that we’ll probably have 6,000 applicants on the January 1 deadline, we’ll want to leave space for them to get in as well.”
Due to the devastation of Hurricane Sandy, a number of schools in the northeast—including Columbia University, Cornell University, New York University, Boston College, Amherst College, and Boston University—extended their deadlines to allow students ample time to recover from the storm. Bowdoin did not extend its November 15 deadline.
Meiklejohn said Bowdoin decided not to extend its deadline because it fell later.
“We’ve had a couple of requests for extensions, but we’ve only done them on an individual basis. Some of the schools that had November 1 deadlines made blanket extensions,” he said. “We could just work on a case-by-case basis.”
Last year the College admitted 172 of 594 ED I applicants. This year’s decisions will be mailed out in mid-December.